Recharge, relax and unwind
It’s at this time of the year that your normal routine goes out of the window. Kids break up from school, so there’s no school run to do. Teenagers sleep in late. Once you have finished work, you begin to forget what day it is. We need this time to recharge our batteries and unwind.
It’s Christmas! Happy Hanukkah! Holidays are here!!
Is there a place for routine, even in the holidays?
When our daughter was a baby, we followed a structured routine. Called the EASY routine, its essence lay in establishing a structured pattern of activity: Eat, Activity, Sleep, then time for You. This worked incredibly well, set an expectation about what would come next, and was the cornerstone of our activities in those early years.
As our little girl grew, the period of activity lengthened and the sleeps became fewer in number, but the routine stood the test of time until well into toddlerdom. We liked it. She liked it. It provided a structured but flexible approach to family life.
So, could establishing an agreed pattern work at other times, such as the holidays?
In her recent ‘Happier’ podcast, Gretchen Rubin provided a great ‘holiday hack’ that prompted me to think about the notion of ‘routine’ even though there will be no little ones in our family grouping this Christmas.
Rubin’s idea was simple, but it may just help you. It was this:
Everyone has quiet time on his/her own after lunch.
I can really see the value of this. Sometimes, you need to have some space, especially if you’ve been in ‘entertaining-mode’ and feel as though you’ve been feeding the 5,000.
You may get a post-lunch slump. That’s your body’s cue: take a nap.
During quiet time, kids may get to use their mobile devices unimpeded and may even (who knows?!) read a book, do a jigsaw or get creative with new colouring pencils.
Grandparents might be glad of a little respite, too. Creatures of habit, they may be used to a slower pace of life or just their own company. Suggesting ‘time out’ for everyone might be welcomed.
Come back refreshed
When you all come back together, you’ll feel refreshed and ready, once again, to be on your best ‘Christmassy’ behaviour.
What routines or structure will you adopt this holiday time?